Muddymoles mountain biking in the Surrey Hills and Mole Valley

Specialized Defroster review

Posted by Tony | November 23, 2015 | 13 comments so far

2016 Specialized Defroster Trail shoes

2016 Specialized Defroster Trail shoes

The mild spell is over and we are now well into the grips of winter. A PSA from Muddymole Elliot let us know that one of the MTB retailers were selling off last years Specialized Defrosters off at a great price. My current Defrosters have seen 5 winters and it’s beginning to show.

Time for some new boots!

Looking at the 2016 Defrosters, plenty has changed in the five years since my last set of Defrosters were Specialized’s finest. Principally the main issue with the old Defrosters has been addressed, the poor closure system at the top of the boot letting in water. The laces are now boa’s which is a reasonable system and the flap wraps over the whole front of the foot. Next there is a big wrap that closes the top of the boot (it comes half way up the shin).

Side by side with the old Defrosters they look massive! Plus, although it wont last long, they are bright orange.

I’m thinking of suggesting that D’Andy gets a pair, so that after his frequent “excursions from the trail” I’ll be able to spot him in the undergrowth better, with the orange soles in the air, so I can help him back to his bike.

The old boots have held up well. They are still proof from water coming in from the bottom, but the neoprene at the top is beginning to come apart. Shoe fit is somewhat down to individual preference but both the old Defrosters, which are still extremely comfortable and the new ones fit me “like a glove”. Excellent.

With the mud and gloop set in for the rest of the winter, a pair of these boots combined with a pair of waterproof trousers (the pro-trouser movement in the moles is gaining momentum) it should be possible to have dry feet all winter.

Specialized Defroster MTB 2011 shoes

A well-worn pair of 2011 Defrosters

The first outing with the new Defrosters was last weekend. A commendably mud free route from Karl meant that I didn’t test out their mud shedding or waterproofing very well. However it was well below freezing for the whole of the ride and my feet were nice and warm all ride. It bodes well for the rest of the winter. Hopefully these new boots should give as many years of service as the old boots.

Finally a big thumbs up to Freeborn cycles in Horley. I ordered the boots from them but got a call to say that they were out of the 2015 boots but gave me a similarly great deal on the bright new 2016 version. Thanks!

Filed under Clothing, Reviews in November 2015


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There are 13 comments on ‘Specialized Defroster review’

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  1. Dandy says:

    I’m thinking of extending your idea and incorporating a few visits to the tanning salon. A dayglo orange pair of suntanned legs waving in the undergrowth will be easier to spot 🙂

    • Tony says:

      That’s a good idea. Who’d have thought that your fluoro plaid would be so hard to spot in the undergrowth so anything to make you more visible would be good. I thought I’d lost you for good once when you went into that rhododendron on BingoBongoDave.

  2. Matt says:

    The future’s orange. What Tony’s pic doesn’t show too well is that the lighter side panels are much lighter than they appear and quite reflective under night lighting conditions.

  3. Tony says:

    Yep it’s hard to spot or show in a phote but there is quite a lot of reflective material on the shoes. Obviously it’s easier to see that with 2000lumens of Matt’s Exposure MaxxD shining at you feet.

  4. lloyd says:

    Tried mine out in all the wet and mud and drizzle this morning. They are brilliant. Dry and warm and repelled everything.

    I would have been happy at full price – at £60 off, absolute bargain.

  5. JR says:

    Well mine arrived, I put them on, and they were too big. Unfortunately my size is out of stock . . .

  6. Related: Ride report: Sunday 6 December - Mud, mud, sand, mud, mud | Rides | Muddymoles: Mountain biking (MTB) in the Surrey Hills and Mole Valley

  7. Paul901 says:

    Hi all, well much as I’m sentimental about my various road shoes across the years I grudgingly have to say my Defrosters of the vintage you have just retired Tony are the best cycling footwear I ever bought. Alas if yours lasted 5 years I’m guessing mine will see me through to retirement!

    I did push the 901 out the workshop last month, the wheels were reluctant to turn and the brake levers had little resistance. Guessing it’s time to take it to John at Horsley cycles for new pads and brake fluid service, I have never managed to look after these things the way I can with the road bikes.

  8. Related: Ride report: Sunday 27 December - The burrow calls | Rides | Muddymoles: Mountain biking (MTB) in the Surrey Hills and Mole Valley

  9. R Longley says:

    My current MTB Defrosters are 2010 vintage and have finally submitted my feet to a thorough damping.
    I actually purchased these boots direct from the Specialized concept shop in person on recommendation, along with the full regalia “kit”, and wondered if I was mad getting these shoes at £100 plus.
    I attempted to get replacement studs for the boots a few times to no avail; “get some football boot studs” was the only reply.
    After the monsoon conditions in the north of England this June, I am observing on refection at my battered 1000 hour pedalled, kitchen rolled filled Defrosters on top of the radiator and thinking ” what Great service they’ve given and, what Great value they actually turned out to be ‼️”

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